ImmerseMessiah NLT - Page 282


people coming and going that Jesus and his apostles didn’t even have time
to eat.
So they left by boat for a quiet place, where they could be alone. But
many people recognized them and saw them leaving, and people from
many towns ran ahead along the shore and got there ahead of them. Jesus
saw the huge crowd as he stepped from the boat, and he had compassion
on them because they were like sheep without a shepherd. So he began
teaching them many things.
Late in the afternoon his disciples came to him and said, “This is a remote place, and it’s already getting late. Send the crowds away so they can
go to the nearby farms and villages and buy something to eat.”
But Jesus said, “You feed them.”
“With what?” they asked. “We’d have to work for months to earn enough
money to buy food for all these people!”
“How much bread do you have?” he asked. “Go and find out.”
They came back and reported, “We have five loaves of bread and two
Then Jesus told the disciples to have the people sit down in groups on
the green grass. So they sat down in groups of fifty or a hundred.
Jesus took the five loaves and two fish, looked up toward heaven, and
blessed them. Then, breaking the loaves into pieces, he kept giving the
bread to the disciples so they could distribute it to the people. He also
divided the fish for everyone to share. They all ate as much as they wanted,
and afterward, the disciples picked up twelve baskets of leftover bread and
fish. A total of 5,000 men and their families were fed.
Immediately after this, Jesus insisted that his disciples get back into the
boat and head across the lake to Bethsaida, while he sent the people home.
After telling everyone good-bye, he went up into the hills by himself to
Late that night, the disciples were in their boat in the middle of the lake,
and Jesus was alone on land. He saw that they were in serious trouble, rowing hard and struggling against the wind and waves. About three o’clock in
the morning Jesus came toward them, walking on the water. He intended
to go past them, but when they saw him walking on the water, they cried
out in terror, thinking he was a ghost. They were all terrified when they
saw him.
But Jesus spoke to them at once. “Don’t be afraid,” he said. “Take courage! I am here!” Then he climbed into the boat, and the wind stopped.
They were totally amazed, for they still didn’t understand the significance
of the miracle of the loaves. Their hearts were too hard to take it in.

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